Destin, Florida, is not just a haven for beach lovers but also a paradise for food enthusiasts, especially those who crave the vibrant and spicy flavors of Mexican cuisine. When it comes to finding the best Mexican restaurant in Destin, the choices are as varied and colorful as the cuisine itself. This article will guide you through the top 5 Mexican restaurants in Destin, each offering a unique experience that will tantalize your taste buds.
Our journey through Destin’s Mexican culinary scene has been nothing short of spectacular. Yet, the quest for exceptional cuisine doesn’t stop here. Should your travels bring you to Texas, dive into Dallas’s breakfast culture with our best breakfast Dallas Guide, a curated selection of places where morning meals become memorable experiences.
1. El Pescador’s Fiesta: A Seafood Twist to Mexican Cuisine
Located at 34863 Emerald Coast Pkwy, Destin, FL 32541, this hidden gem offers a unique fusion of traditional Mexican flavors and the freshest local seafood. In this detailed review, we will explore the specialties, ambiance, and must-try dishes that make El Pescador’s Fiesta a standout destination for seafood-loving foodies.
El Pescador’s Fiesta boasts an extensive menu, but some dishes truly stand out and are not to be missed. Let’s take a closer look at their specialties:
- Mariscos Tacos: Priced at around $15, these Mariscos Tacos are a local favorite. These tacos are filled with a delightful mixture of seafood, perfectly seasoned and garnished with fresh ingredients. Whether you prefer shrimp, fish, or a combination of both, these tacos are a must-try for anyone looking to experience the seafood twist in Mexican cuisine.
- Camarones a la Diabla (Spicy Shrimp): If you’re in the mood for some heat, don’t hesitate to order the ‘Camarones a la Diabla’ for $18. This dish features succulent shrimp cooked in a fiery, rich chili sauce that will awaken your taste buds. Served with rice and beans, it’s a crowd-pleaser for those who enjoy a spicy kick with their seafood.
El Pescador’s Fiesta doesn’t just excel in the culinary department; it also offers a captivating ambiance that enhances your dining experience. The restaurant’s interior is designed with a cozy and inviting atmosphere in mind. Here are some highlights of the ambiance:
- Nautical Decor: The restaurant’s interior is adorned with tasteful nautical decor, including fishing nets, seashells, and maritime-themed artwork. This decor creates a relaxed and coastal ambiance that perfectly complements the seafood-themed menu.
- Cozy Setting: The seating arrangements are designed to ensure comfort and intimacy for diners. Whether you’re on a romantic date or dining with family and friends, the cozy setting allows for a pleasant dining experience.
- Outdoor Seating: El Pescador’s Fiesta also offers outdoor seating options, allowing guests to enjoy their meal with a view of the beautiful Destin coastline. It’s an excellent choice for those who want to bask in the Florida sun while savoring delicious seafood dishes.
2. La Hacienda: Authentic Mexican Flavors
Situated at 775 Gulf Shore Dr, Destin, FL 32541, this restaurant is a haven for those who appreciate the richness and tradition of Mexican cuisine. In this comprehensive review, we’ll delve into the menu highlights, ambiance, and what makes La Hacienda a great dining choice, especially for lovers of authentic Mexican dishes.
La Hacienda prides itself on offering a menu that captures the essence of Mexican cuisine. Here are some menu highlights that you should definitely consider trying:
- Mole Poblano: Priced at $17, the ‘Mole Poblano’ is a classic Mexican dish known for its complexity and depth of flavor. This rich, dark mole sauce is made from a blend of chili peppers, chocolate, and spices, creating a harmonious balance of sweet and savory. It’s often served over chicken or turkey and is a true delight for the taste buds.
- Chiles Rellenos: For $16, you can savor the ‘Chiles Rellenos,’ a dish that showcases the artistry of Mexican cuisine. It consists of poblano peppers stuffed with cheese or a savory filling, then battered and fried to perfection. These stuffed peppers are often served with a tomato-based sauce, creating a flavorful and satisfying meal.
The ambiance at La Hacienda plays a significant role in enhancing your dining experience. Here are some key features of the restaurant’s atmosphere:
- Warm and Inviting: As soon as you step inside, you’ll be greeted by a warm and inviting atmosphere. The restaurant’s interior is adorned with vibrant Mexican art and decor, creating a visually pleasing and culturally immersive environment.
- Cozy Seating: Whether you’re dining with a group or having an intimate dinner for two, La Hacienda offers cozy seating arrangements that make you feel right at home. The comfortable setting encourages relaxation and enjoyment.
Why It’s Great
La Hacienda stands out for several reasons, making it a fantastic choice for those seeking authentic Mexican flavors:
- Authenticity: La Hacienda is committed to preserving the authenticity of Mexican cuisine. The flavors are true to tradition, ensuring that you get a genuine taste of Mexico with every bite.
- Diverse Vegetarian Options: One of the standout features of La Hacienda is its commitment to catering to diverse dietary preferences. They offer a wide range of vegetarian options, allowing everyone to enjoy the rich flavors of Mexican cuisine.
3. Taco Fiesta: A Casual Delight
Situated at 950 Gulf Shore Dr, Destin, FL 32541, this restaurant has earned a reputation as the best spot in town for a wide variety of tacos and margaritas. In this detailed overview, we’ll explore the taco offerings, the laid-back ambiance, and the unique offerings that make Taco Fiesta a must-visit for casual dining enthusiasts.
Taco Fiesta is all about tacos, and they take this seriously by offering a diverse range of taco options to satisfy every palate. Here’s a glimpse of their taco variety:
- Classic Beef Tacos: Priced at just $3 each, the classic beef tacos are a timeless favorite. They feature seasoned ground beef, lettuce, cheese, and salsa, all wrapped in a warm tortilla. Perfect for those who enjoy the traditional flavors of a taco.
- Exotic ‘Carnitas’ Tacos: For $3.50 each, you can explore the exotic flavors of ‘Carnitas’ tacos. Carnitas are slow-cooked, tender chunks of pork that are flavorful and juicy. These tacos are often garnished with fresh cilantro, onions, and a squeeze of lime for a burst of flavor.
Taco Fiesta offers a laid-back and friendly atmosphere that’s perfect for a casual lunch or dinner. The vibe at this restaurant is designed to make you feel comfortable and relaxed. Whether you’re dining with friends, family, or even solo, you’ll find the ambiance welcoming and inviting. It’s an ideal spot to unwind, enjoy good food, and have a great time.
One of the standout features of Taco Fiesta is their ‘Taco Tuesday’ specials. On Tuesdays, you can look forward to discounted prices on select tacos and the chance to savor unique and creative taco flavors that are not available on the regular menu. ‘Taco Tuesday’ is a popular event at Taco Fiesta, drawing both locals and tourists seeking a delightful midweek treat.
4. Margarita’s Cantina: The Party Spot
Located at 11225 US-98, Destin, FL 32550, this establishment has earned its reputation as the best Mexican restaurant in town for those seeking a vibrant atmosphere and excellent margaritas. In this comprehensive overview, we’ll explore their signature margaritas, the energetic ambiance, and a recommended dish that’s a feast for both the eyes and the palate.
Margarita’s Cantina is renowned for its margaritas, and they offer a selection that is sure to please any margarita enthusiast. Here’s a must-try:
- Frozen Mango Margarita: Priced at $10, their signature ‘Frozen Mango Margarita’ is a delightful concoction that perfectly balances the sweetness of ripe mango with the tangy kick of tequila. Served in a frosty glass, it’s a refreshing and tropical escape that sets the tone for a fun-filled evening.
The ambiance at Margarita’s Cantina is energetic and vibrant, making it the ideal spot for a lively night out. Here are some key features:
- Live Music on Weekends: To enhance the party atmosphere, Margarita’s Cantina hosts live music performances on weekends. It’s the perfect accompaniment to your meal and adds to the overall excitement of the dining experience.
- Lively Crowd: The restaurant attracts a diverse and energetic crowd, creating an electric atmosphere that’s contagious. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or just enjoying a night out with friends, you’ll feel the energy in the air.
While Margarita’s Cantina is known for its margaritas and lively ambiance, they also offer a delectable menu with one dish that stands out:
- Fajita Platter: Priced at $22, the ‘Fajita Platter’ is a visual and culinary feast. It features sizzling strips of marinated grilled meat (typically chicken or steak) served with sautéed onions and bell peppers. Accompanied by warm tortillas, sour cream, guacamole, and salsa, this dish allows you to assemble your own flavorful fajitas at the table, creating a memorable and interactive dining experience.
5. Casa de Fiesta: A Family-Friendly Mexican Haven
Located at 12273 US-98, Miramar Beach, Destin, FL 32550, this restaurant is designed with families in mind, offering a menu that caters to all ages and preferences. In this comprehensive review, we’ll explore the family favorites, the warm and welcoming setting, and the special kids’ menu that make Casa de Fiesta an ideal choice for a family-friendly dining experience.
Casa de Fiesta offers a menu that boasts a variety of dishes, but some options are especially beloved by families. Here are two family favorites to consider:
- Enchiladas Suizas: Priced at $15, the ‘Enchiladas Suizas’ are a crowd-pleaser. These enchiladas are filled with tender chicken, covered in a creamy tomatillo sauce, and topped with melted cheese. Served with rice and beans, they are a savory and satisfying choice for both adults and children.
- Pollo Asado: For $17, the ‘Pollo Asado’ is another family favorite. This dish features grilled marinated chicken served with a side of rice, beans, and tortillas. The flavorful char-grilled chicken is sure to please even the pickiest eaters in the family.
Casa de Fiesta prides itself on providing a warm and welcoming setting that encourages family gatherings. Here are some key aspects of the restaurant’s ambiance:
- Family-Friendly Atmosphere: The restaurant exudes a family-friendly atmosphere where everyone feels at home. The comfortable seating and inviting decor make it the perfect place for parents and children alike to relax and enjoy their meal.
- Spacious Dining Area: Casa de Fiesta offers a spacious dining area to accommodate families of all sizes. Whether you have a small family or a large group, you’ll find ample seating and room to move around.
One of the standout features of Casa de Fiesta is its special kids’ menu, designed to please young palates. Here’s a sample item from the kids’ menu:
- Mini Quesadillas: Priced at $6, ‘Mini Quesadillas’ are a hit with the kids. These small quesadillas are filled with melted cheese and served with a side of rice and beans. It’s a delicious and kid-friendly option that ensures even the youngest family members can enjoy their meal.
6. Sunset Grill: Coastal Dining with a View
Located at 13625 Emerald Coast Pkwy, Destin, FL 32541, Sunset Grill offers a unique dining experience with stunning coastal views. In this review, we’ll explore their seafood specialties, the picturesque ambiance, and why this restaurant is a top choice for those seeking a meal with a view.
Sunset Grill is known for its fresh seafood dishes that perfectly complement the waterfront setting. Here are some seafood specialties to try:
- Gulf Shrimp Scampi: Priced at $19, the Gulf Shrimp Scampi is a delightful dish that features plump shrimp sautéed in a garlic and butter sauce. Served over linguini, it’s a flavorful and satisfying choice for seafood enthusiasts.
- Blackened Mahi-Mahi: For $23, you can savor the Blackened Mahi-Mahi, a perfectly seasoned and seared fillet of Mahi-Mahi. It’s served with a side of rice and seasonal vegetables, making it a well-balanced and delicious option.
What truly sets Sunset Grill apart is its breathtaking ambiance:
- Waterfront Dining: The restaurant’s outdoor seating provides guests with a front-row view of the mesmerizing sunset over the Gulf of Mexico. It’s the perfect setting for a romantic dinner or a memorable evening with friends and family.
- Live Music: Sunset Grill frequently hosts live music performances, creating a lively and enjoyable atmosphere. The music adds to the overall charm of the restaurant and makes dining here a truly immersive experience.
7. Taco Beach: Surf, Sand, and Tacos
Situated at 34627 Emerald Coast Pkwy, Destin, FL 32541, Taco Beach is a casual eatery that combines beach vibes with mouthwatering tacos. In this review, we’ll explore their taco creations, the laid-back beachfront atmosphere, and why Taco Beach is a must-visit for those looking to savor tacos by the sea.
Taco Beach takes tacos to the next level with a creative and diverse menu. Here are a couple of their taco creations:
- Beach Baja Fish Tacos: Priced at $4 each, the Beach Baja Fish Tacos are a hit among beachgoers. They feature crispy, beer-battered fish topped with slaw, chipotle mayo, and fresh cilantro, all wrapped in a soft tortilla. It’s a taste of the beach in every bite.
- Surf ‘n’ Turf Tacos: For $5 each, you can indulge in the Surf ‘n’ Turf Tacos, a fusion of flavors that combines tender grilled steak and succulent shrimp, garnished with pico de gallo and a drizzle of lime crema. These tacos offer a delightful blend of land and sea.
Taco Beach offers a laid-back and beachfront atmosphere that captures the essence of Destin’s coastal charm:
- Outdoor Seating: The restaurant provides outdoor seating right on the beach, allowing you to dine with your toes in the sand. It’s a perfect spot to enjoy a meal while taking in the soothing sounds of the waves.
- Beachfront Bar: Taco Beach also boasts a beachfront bar where you can sip on refreshing cocktails and enjoy the sea breeze. It’s an ideal place to unwind and watch the sunset.
Destin’s culinary landscape is rich with flavors and experiences, especially when it comes to Mexican cuisine. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, these top 5 Mexican restaurants in Destin offer an unforgettable dining experience that goes beyond just a meal. From authentic dishes at La Hacienda to the lively atmosphere of Margarita’s Cantina, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant city. So, next time you’re in Destin, make sure to indulge in the spicy, flavorful, and utterly delightful Mexican cuisine that these restaurants offer.
Q: Are these restaurants suitable for vegetarians?
A: Yes, each of these top Mexican restaurants in Destin offers vegetarian options on their menu.
Q: Do these restaurants offer takeout or delivery services?
A: Most of these restaurants provide takeout services, and some might offer delivery through third-party services like UberEats or DoorDash.
Q: Are reservations required for these restaurants?
A: It’s recommended to make reservations, especially during peak hours and weekends, to ensure a spot in these popular destinations.
Q: Do these restaurants serve alcohol?
A: Yes, all these restaurants have a variety of alcoholic beverages, including signature Mexican cocktails like margaritas and tequila-based drinks.
Q: Are these restaurants kid-friendly?
A: Absolutely! These restaurants are known for their welcoming atmosphere and have options that cater to younger guests.